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News

What a Merry Fair It was!

12.10.2015

On Sunday of October, 11, 2015, the signs in the streets of Stanitsa Karghinskaya showed the direction for the numerous cars and pedestrians to move to the mill farmstead of T.A.Karghin, where the traditional Karghin Fair was running. The people dressed up and stocked up with good spirits got ready to show themselves and to see others.

The cold weather of the day made the people move in groups about the Fair place decorated with colourful flags and garlands. Some guests preferred master-classes of arts and crafts, others liked competitions, horse and pony riding, games and entertainment for children or strongmen competitions and circus performances. Young people had a fun riding on the carousel and swings made according to a vintage design. More sedate people played win lotteries. The food booths attracted the customers, who were active in tasting the Don Cossack dishes.

Another entertainment for all the comers was a pleasure boating on the Chir River.

Still there were many people who wanted to go on an excursion about the roller mill of Timofey Karghin, thanks to Sholokhov’s works. The tourists marveled at the new knowledge: that is how the Don grain was processed into high quality flour to make daily bread of it. The Karghin mill used to help to feed all the neigbourhood with bread, and the grinding quality was beyond comparison. The flour manufacturing technology of the early XX century was very curious, and now we can only wonder how many new artifices and inventions the former masters-engineers had to apply in order to build an intricate chain of peculiar complex technological process.

An unusual exhibition of vintage oil lamps shown by P.Soldatov, a collector from Vyoshenskaya, attracted the visitors, who are interested in our past history. From old times the people tried to “extend daylight” to enlarge their knowledge, do some useful things about the household and educate children. “The light even from an oil lamp gave a person an opportunity of new and greater development”, – Pyotr Soldatov considers and by his collection of more than forty lamps he convinced the visitors in it.

One more Fair attraction was a “pre-revolutionary” photo studio offering to take pictures in the vintage interior in memory of the present event and within half an hour receive the photos framed with an art vignette. Such photos of Cossacks had been kept for a hundred or more years in many families, now they are kept in museum collections as a visual reflection of the environment, which served the basis for many works of M.A.Sholokhov.

At the festival official ceremony the public was welcomed by Yury Pyatikov, Head of the Bokovsky District Administration, and Alexander Sholokhov, Director of the Museum-Reserve of M.A.Sholokhov. The winners in the competition for the best house and grounds were awarded prizes. The opening ceremony was followed by the concert of song and dance folk groups and theatrical performance “How Kruzhilin Villagers were Travelling to the Karghin Fair…” The amateur actors showed scenes from the village life with humour and self-irony.

A great attraction was the force extreme performance by Dmitry Nagorny from Donetsk the Rostov Region. First he playfully bent iron bars, then he rolled a frying-pan “into a tube”, hammered a nail into a board with his bare hand. But the highlight of the program was his dragging a KamAZ lorry for 20 metres and his carrying a 300 kg sack of grain for a certain distance. There are still strong men in Russia!

The literary and ethnographic holiday “Karghin Fair on Pokrov Days” gains new fans. Everyone had a fun, stocked his mind with new knowledge of our history, did his shopping, enjoyed the theatrical and circus performances and remembered the song folklore of the Cossack villages and stanitsas.

The Fair was merry and very impressive!

 

Alexey Kochetov